Continental Clásico Recap: United States 1 - Mexico 1
Defensive errors on both sides leads to a draw as US extends unbeaten streak against El Tri to five!
The United States Men's National Team returned to action Wednesday night as they hosted Mexico inside State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona for the inaugural Continental Clásico.
Anthony Hudson rolled out a 4-2-3-1 lineup as Sean Johnson started between the sticks, as Sergiño Dest, Aaron Long, Walker Zimmerman, and DeAndre Yedlin provided the defense. Kellyn Acosta, James Sands, Jesús Ferreira, Cade Cowell, and Jordan Morris comprised the midfield, while Brandon Vázquez was the lone striker.
Diego Cocca rolled out a 3-5-2 formation with Carlos Acevedo in goal. Victor Guzmán, Néstor Araujo, and Israel Reyes provided the defense. Jesús Gallardo and Julián Araujo served as wing backs as Luis Chávez, Érike Sánchez, and Uriel Antuna made up the midfield. Roberto de la Rosa and Alexis Vega provided Mexico’s attack.
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Chávez came close to putting Mexico on the board in the 19th minute as he sent a laser of a shot on goal, but it was just off frame as it sailed right off the goal post.
Nervy moments came in the 43rd as Johnson had some communication issues with the USMNT outfield players before a free kick. Those miscommunications nearly hurt the United States as Reyes snuck past the backline and found himself wide open in front of the goal as the free kick was sailing in his direction. Luckily for Johnson and the U.S., the free kick had too much on it, as Reyes could not get onto it.
An absolute blunder by the United States came in the 55th minute as an Acosta pass evaded Long and the center back had to scramble towards it. Long got to the ball and tried to evade Antuna, but the attempted pass deflected off Antuna and upfield.
Antuna darted onto the ball and raced down the field. Zimmerman turned on the jets as he attempted to track back, but it wasn’t enough as Antuna found himself one-on-one with Johnson as he slotted the ball into the bottom right corner of the net to give Mexico a 1-0 lead.
A double substitution came in the 64th minute as Alan Soñora and Aiden Morris came on for Cade Cowell and Brandon Vázquez. Another substitution came in the 70th minute as Matt Miazga came on for Aaron Long.
Sean Johnson kept the US in the match in the 74th minute as Roberto de la Rosa rocketed a shot from distance as Johnson stretched out to get a palm to the ball and deflect it away from goal.
Another close chance was created by Mexico in the 81st minute as Carlos Rodríguez nearly found the back of the net, but the goalpost saved the day as the ball dinked off the post and back into play. The US took full advantage of the situation as they quickly drove up the field, as Morris found himself just outside the box. Morris sent a ball forward as he looked to find Ferreira. It looked as if Victor Guzmán was going to clear the ball away from danger, but he didn’t get enough on it as his touch led the ball right to Ferreira, who slotted it past Acevedo to level the game.
The final two US substitutions came in the 89th minute as Caleb Wiley and Paxton Pomykal replaced Sergiño Dest and Jordan Morris.
Acosta received a yellow card in the closing seconds of stoppage time after retaliating against Érike Sánchez.
Wednesday’s thriller extended the United States’ unbeaten streak to five matches as Jesús Ferreira’s 82nd-minute goal led to a 1-1 draw.